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Berlioz / A Berlioz Orchestra Spectacular

Another Dubby Klavier Mess of a Record

  (Item #: berliaberl_klavier) 



Sonic Grade: F

A Hall of Shame Record and another Remastered Audiophile Pressing debunked. Eight spectacular shorter works including overtures, marches and excerpts from symphonic poems. Orchestral fireworks to make your stereo come alive.

But the sound is thick and opaque because the record was mastered from a copy tape, and not all that well anyway.


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Berlioz / Music Of Berlioz / Martinon

Our Shootout Winner from 2011

  (Item #: berlimusic_15031_2011) 



A distinguished member of the Better Records Orchestral Music Hall of Fame.

This English Stereo Treasury pressing (on an odd lookinig Orange label, with handwritten stampers I have never seen before) has a SUPERB side two and side one is almost as good! The original release is London CS 6101 and I doubt most copies of it would sound this good.

This is Classic Old School Decca sound, rich and smooth with an exceptionally wide and deep soundstage. All the instruments are clear and have good texture, which is what one rarely hears on the most early pressings, which tend to be thick and dark. A little more top and this side two would have earned the full Three Pluses.

More of the music of Hector Berlioz


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Berlioz / Symphonie Fantastique / Bernstein

Reviewed in 2011

  (Item #: berlisymfa_col_2011) 



A distinguished member of the Better Records Orchestral Music Hall of Fame.

Super Hot Stamper sound or BETTER for side two of this mid-'60s Columbia 360 (white arrows) pressing, and both sides offer up masterful performances by Bernstein and the New York Phil. This is a very difficult record to find in playable condition on the early label; most pressings are just beat whenever you are fortunate enough to find them.

More of the music written or performed by Leonard Bernstein


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Berlioz / Symphonie Fantastique / Fourestier

Reviewed in 2010

  (Item #: berlisymph_2011) 



A distinguished member of the Better Records Orchestral Music Hall of Fame.

This obscure French label stereo reissue of an original Omega recording from the '60s is SUPERB SOUNDING, without a doubt the best sound I have ever heard for the work. (The stereo is much better these days than it was years ago when we auditioned other pressings, so comparisons with those other, older records are practically pointless.)

And the performance is Top Notch as well; I know of none better.

More of the music of Hector Berlioz


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Berlioz / Symphonie Fantastique / Monteux / Vienna Phil

Our Shootout Winner from 2014

  (Item #: berlisymph_2362_2014) 



A distinguished member of the Better Records Orchestral Music Hall of Fame.

Gorgeous Golden Age Tubey Magical strings, lovely hall acoustics. The size and power of a large orchestra in Living Stereo sound. One of our favorite performances of Berlioz's masterwork.

More of the music of Hector Berlioz


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Ravel, Falla, Weber & Berlioz - Alborado..., Bolero, more

Our Shootout Winner from 2011

  (Item #: ravelboler_6077_2011) 



A distinguished member of the Better Records Orchestral Music Hall of Fame.

Side two here has a SUPERB sounding Bolero, and an EVEN BETTER Alborado del Gracioso, possibly the best we have ever heard. True A Triple Plus sound.

As you probably know, Bolero is very hard to find on vinyl properly performed with audiophile quality sound. The sound of Bolero here is excellent: very natural, not harsh at the end where the trombones comes in, and the not too compressed. (This is probably the biggest problem with most recordings of the work. Compression makes the quieter parts ravishingly open and clear, and positively ruins the climax with distorted compressor overload.)

More of the music of Maurice Ravel (1875-1937)


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Various Artists - Destination Stereo

Our Shootout Winner from 2015

  (Item #: variodesti_2015) 



A distinguished member of the Better Records Orchestral Music Hall of Fame.

Side one is White Hot, with some of the best 1959 Living Stereo we've ever heard. Explosive dynamics, HUGE space and size, with unerringly correct tonality, this is a Demo Disc like no other. When "in -the-know" audiophiles discuss soundstaging and depth, they had better be talking about a record that sounds like this. Shockingly real - proof positive that the cutting systems of the day are capable of much better sound than we normally assume.

More Living Stereo


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